If your case is going to trial, or if you are being deposed, there are a few things you should know that will make the experience easier. First, when you testify, either in a deposition or under oath, you should understand there is a court reporter taking down every word you say.
The court reporter makes a complete record of the testimony given by you and others in the case, and the lawyers rely on this record when evaluating the case. At Rosner Law Offices, P.C., we don’t want our clients facing unpleasant surprises. Here are some tips for testifying.
Tell the Truth
This is not so much a tip as it is a requirement. While this should be obvious, you’d be surprised at how many people fail to appreciate how important this is. Unfortunately, too many injured people either overstate or understate the extent of their injuries, and how their injuries have complicated their lives.
Telling the truth is not only critical to a fair evaluation of your case, it is the law. In other words, if you misrepresent the truth, you could be subject to both criminal and civil consequences, in the form of perjury charges. The jury may also find you less trustworthy on all issues, if they believe you misrepresented the truth on even one issue.
Listen to the Question Being Asked
Listen to the question asked and answer that question – and just that question. It is not your job to attempt to fill in details that haven’t been requested. Attorneys have a reason for asking the questions they ask. Often, the attorney is planning to ask more questions, and will get to other details eventually. If you feel the attorney is being unfair by not asking certain questions that would provide more information, rest assured, in a trial, your attorney will be able to return to the topic and ask you the questions that provide the relevant information to the jury.
Remember That Questioning Is Being Recorded
Because a court reporter is making a record, it is essential that you not talk over the lawyer asking a question. Let the lawyer finish the question before you provide an answer, even if you think you know what the whole question will be. Additionally, be mindful of answers such as “uh-huh” and “huh- uh.” These are difficult to transcribe correctly. You should answer “yes” or “no.” Speak clearly and with sufficient volume so that the court reporter can hear you easily.
If You Have Been Injured
If you have been injured, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact Rosner Law Offices, P.C. to discuss the facts and circumstances of your case. While most cases settle, we prepare for every possibility, including making sure you are prepared for trial and know what is expected of you in the courtroom. We are ready to fight for you all the way through trial, when necessary, and have successfully recovered more than $100,000,000 in personal injury claims. Put our expertise to work for you. Call us at (856) 692-6500.